Cristiana de Marchi
al Mawrid Resident Fellow program provides an opportunity for artists and scholars to explore al Mawrid's archive and to engage with the NYUAD faculty and students. This one-month residency is by invitation.
Scholars interested in collaborating with al Mawrid are encouraged to apply to the NYU Abu Dhabi Research Institute's Humanities Research Fellowships for the Study of the Arab World. The Institute welcomes applications from scholars working in all areas of the Humanities related to the study of the Arab world, its rich literature and history, its cultural and artistic heritage, and its manifold connections with other cultures.
al Mawrid Arab Center for the Study of Art welcomes Cristiana de Mrachi as its Resident Fellow for May 2024.
Cristiana de Marchi has a long record of work with and writing on the UAE art community. She has been the in-house curator at The Flying House (2008-2012), a collective of UAE pioneering visual artists, gathering around the leading figure Hassan Sharif. Her curatorial projects include: Rearranging the Riddle (Maraya Art Centre, 2020), the first institutional solo show by Emirati artist Shaikha Al Mazrou, accompanied by the first monographic publication on Al Mazrou’s artistic practice, also edited by de Marchi; Beyond. Emerging Artists (Abu Dhabi Art, 2017); A Public Privacy (Dubai Community Theatre and Arts Centre, 2015), the inaugural iteration of “UAE Unlimited”, an exhibition platform under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan bin Khalifa Al Nahyan, to promote emerging Emirati and GCC based artists; and MinD/Body (Dubai Community Theatre and Arts Centre, Dubai and NYU Abu Dhabi, 2013), a historical show focusing on performance and the use of body in the Gulf Countries. Both these shows were accompanied by book-length publications edited by de Marchi. In 2016, Sharjah Art Foundation published Embodying, de Marchi’s collection of poems in response to Hassan Sharif’s 1980s performances.
al Mawrid Arab Center for the Study of Art welcomes Suheyla Takesh as its Resident Fellow for October 2023.
Suheyla Takesh is the Curator at Barjeel Art Foundation in Sharjah where she works on research, exhibitions, and oversees its publications. Suheyla holds a master’s degree from MIT’s Department of History, Theory, and Criticism. She is the co-curator of Taking Shape: Abstraction from the Arab World, 1950s–1980s at the Grey Art Gallery, NYU, and the co-editor of its accompanying volume of essays. Her writing has been published in peer-reviewed journals, including Rutgers Art Review, Thresholds, and Journal of Contemporary Iraq & the Arab World. During her Fellowship at al Mawrid, Suheyla will use al Mawrid’s archives to expand her research on East-East cultural relations in the mid to late twentieth century Arab art. Her other research interests include critical interrogations around collection building and the use of geometry in the work of modernist Arab artists.
al Mawrid welcomed Patrick Kane as its Resident Fellow for July 2023.
Patrick Kane is senior lecturer at the Higher Colleges of Technology in Sharjah. He received his Ph.D. from Binghamton University in 2007, where he studied art history and philosophy. Author of The Politics of Art in Modern Egypt (2011), His research focuses on modern Arab history and the arts. With Professor Salwa Mikdadi at NYU Abu Dhabi, he is currently writing an intellectual biography of the Egyptian feminist and artist Inji Efflatoun. He has written for various journals and art catalogs.
Lara Baladi is an Egyptian-Lebanese artist, archivist and educator recognized internationally for her multidisciplinary works. Her artistic practice spans from photography, video, sculpture to architecture, multimedia installations, textile and scent. Informed by critical investigations into historical archives and the study of popular visual culture, Baladi’s work questions the theoretical divide between myth, memory, sociopolitical narratives and the cycles inherent to History.
Baladi received fellowships from the Japan Foundation (2003) and MIT’s Open Documentary Lab (2014). She was an artist-in-residence at MIT (Ida Ely Rubin Artist in Residence, 2015), MacDowell (New Hampshire, 2015), Art Omi (Ghent, New York, 2014) and VASL, (Karachi, Pakistan, 2010), amongst others.
Within her artistic practice, she is active in socially engaged projects. For more than twenty years, she has been on the board of directors of the Arab Image Foundation in Lebanon and the Townhouse Gallery of Contemporary Art in Egypt. Ongoing since 2011, her media initiative Vox Populi: Tahrir Archives, includes a series of media initiatives (Tahrir Cinema), artworks, publications and an opensource timeline and portal into web-based archives of the 2011 Egyptian revolution and other global social movements.
Baladi’s work has been published, exhibited and featured internationally—the Centre Pompidou, (Paris, France, 2004), Transmediale, (Berlin, Germany, 2016), the Gwangju Biennial, (South Korea, 2018) to the Hasselblad Foundation, (Gothenburg, Sweden, 2021).
Since 2016, Lara Baladi has been a lecturer in MIT's Program Art, Culture, and Technology (ACT).
During her time as a Resident Fellow, Baladi will present a series of lectures, conduct studio visits and work to develop one of her projects. At once an artistic and educational endeavor, Anatomy of Revolution is an interactive web-based artwork & archive, a ‘lesson in History,’ in the form of an ABC of terms and iconography related to global, past and present, social movements.
For the month of May, 2022 we welcomed Dr. Hanaa Malallah—artist, researcher, and educator—as al Mawrid’s Resident Fellow. During this time, Malallah participated in research and scholarly endeavors with the al Mawrid team, the NYUAD and the broader community.
More more details on Malallah's activities during her time, please visit the Events page.
Hanaa Malallah is an artist, researcher, and educator, based in London. Born in Iraq, she studied painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Baghdad, and later earned an MA and PhD from the University of Baghdad. In her graduate work, she developed a semiotic approach to art, receiving a doctorate in 2005 for a thesis that uses forms of logic elaborated by modern philosophy to examine the art of ancient Mesopotamia.
Malallah left Iraq at the end of 2006 for an artist residency at the Institut du monde arabe in Paris; that was followed by fellowships at the School of Oriental and African Studies and the Chelsea College of Art in London. She has lectured at the University of Baghdad and the Royal University for Women in Bahrain.
Since the early 1990s, Malallah has tried to think through destruction as an essential part of the human condition, by treating the material she works with as found objects that she mutilates or disfigures according to what she came to conceptualize in 2007 as a ‘ruins technique’. This reflection on destruction has drawn on Malallah’s research on semiotics, and on the material culture of ancient Mesopotamia, but more recently it has shifted its focus from objects to landscapes, and it has explored the ‘virtual’ aspects of destruction: the temporality of decay, the survival of material, and the paradoxical appearance of invisibility within the visible. Her research on the virtual has led more recently to examine the relationship between spiritualism and technology.
Since her first exhibition, in 1991, two months after the Gulf War, the practice of Hanaa Malallah has dealt with the subject of ruins, whether the archaeological ruins of ancient Mesopotamia or the modern ruins produced by war. In this talk, Malallah develops a new hypothesis about the difference between these two kinds of ruins by distinguishing the regenerative energy of ruins produced by time from the lethal energy of rubble produced by war.
For Hanaa's closing seminar or Nadwa, al Mawrid's resident fellow guided a close reading of two documents from her papers. The first document is an unpublished study by Shakir Hassan Al Sa'id (1925-2004), entitled, "The Legend of the Spirit-Bird: the Story of the Silent Language of the Nightingale" (1996). The second is an essay Malallah wrote on the occasion of an exhibition held at the National Gallery of Fine Arts in Amman in 1997 entitled "Environment and Ecology in Iraqi Art".
Al Mawrid is currently in the process of digitizing the artist's collection.
For the month of November, 2021 we welcomed Dr. Lawrence Abu Hamdan as al Mawrid’s Innaugural Resident Fellow.
Lawrence Abu Hamdan is a “Private Ear”. His interest with sound and its intersection with politics originate from his background as a touring musician and facilitator of DIY music. The artists audio investigations has been used as evidence at the UK Asylum and Immigration Tribunal and as advocacy for organisations such as Amnesty International and Defence for Children International together with fellow researchers from Forensic Architecture.
Abu Hamdan completed his PhD in 2017 from Goldsmiths College University of London and has completed fellowships at the Gray Centre for Arts and Inquiry at the University of Chicago and the Vera List Centre for Art and Politics at the New School.
Abu Hamdan has exhibited his work at the 58th Venice Biennale, the 11th Gwanju Biennale and the 13th and 14th Sharjah Biennial, Witte De With, Rotterdam, Tate Modern Tanks, Chisenhale Gallery, Hammer Museum L.A, Portikus Frankfurt, The Showroom, London and Casco, Utrecht. His works are part of collections at MoMA, Guggenheim, Van AbbeMuseum, Centre Pompidou and Tate Modern. Abu Hamdan’s work has been awarded the 2019 Edvard Munch Art Award, the 2016 Nam June Paik Award for new media and in 2017 his film Rubber Coated Steel won the Tiger short film award at the Rotterdam International Film festival. For the 2019 Turner Prize Abu Hamdan, together with nominated artists Helen Cammock, Oscar Murillo and Tai Shani, formed a temporary collective in order to be jointly granted the award.